Top 3 Learn Spanish Software Packages for 2010
How well you learn to speak Spanish, how much fun you have while learning and whether you complete learning is dependent on the quality of the learn Spanish software you choose.
Private Spanish lessons can cost up to $50 per hour and weekly group classes cost any where from $100 to $1000 for a one week to three month course. Students don't always retain what they learn during these courses and if you don't use your newly found Spanish skills frequently there's a good chance you'll lose them.
Save Money and Time with Software
In contrast, learning Spanish software will cost $100-$300, provide months of lesson content and be available anytime you need it to review before a trip or vacation.
I've done a lot of research on Spanish software and have seen some great programs and well let's say some not so great programs. I created LearningSpanishPrograms.com to help you find a quality self study Spanish course that will teach you conversational Spanish from home and won't break the bank.
Below are my top 3 courses for 2010. Any of these courses will teach you to speak conversational Spanish, of course in my opinion one is better than another. I've ranked these by “value” meaning what you get for the money.
If you're looking to learn the basics of conversational Spanish fast then hands down Visual Link Spanish is the best course, but if you're looking for an in depth study of the Spanish language Tell me More Spanish is a better option.
#1 Visual Link Spanish
Visual Link Spanish was developed by David Clark, a university level Spanish teacher. He decided to create this program after realizing the academic method of word memorization to learn Spanish just didn't work.
What did work was teaching students regular everyday english phrases (i.e. Where is the bathroom?) and then teach them how to break those phrases down and construct new sentences. It's from this method of teaching Visual Link Spanish was born. Take a look at the screen shot below to better understand exactly what I mean about the teaching style.
Why Visual Link is Different?
Visual Link spends 100% of it's time teaching you to construct ever day phrases and sentences that you can use to converse in Spanish. The lessons are fast and easy to follow and you'll be speaking your first complete Spanish sentences after your first lesson.
Click here to take a look at the free lessons available on their website (click the red button in the middle of the screen).
Easy to Use
Visual Link is a series interactive visual lessons and videos that are easy to use, so you don't need to be a computer expert to learn. There are also review quizzes, review games and more to measure your progress.
There are more “high tech” and fancy learn Spanish software packages available, how ever I don't believe any of them will teach your Spanish faster.
Right Price and Guaranteed
The icing on the cake is that Visual Link Spanish 1 sells for under $150 and comes with a 6 month money back guarantee if you're not satisfied with the course. If you want to learn to speak Spanish conversationally either for an upcoming trip, vacation or just for fun this is the best value course right now.
#2 Rocket Spanish
Rocket Spanish, while not a full software program, is only available online and uses a mixture of audio lessons and computer based activities and games to teach you conversational Spanish. It's also the only download course I have listed. The benefit is that you get instant access to the lessons after paying, not waiting for a box to get shipped to your home or office.
My favorite feature of Rocket Spanish is it's portability. Because the majority of lesson content is in MP3 format you can easily put them on your iPod (or other MP3 player) or burn them to a CD and learn on the go. There are 12 hours of audio lessons in total, divided into small easily digestible chunks of learning.
Like Visual Link Spanish, Rocket Spanish doesn't focus on memorization of hundreds of words, rather it teaches you how to communicate conversationally in Spanish.
Using Rocket Spanish
Each audio lesson is short and to the point, easily digested during a morning or evening commute to or from work. Since you have access to each lesson forever you can easily go back and review previous material if you need to brush up on your Spanish at a point in the future.
Their are 414 activities to load and use on your computer. Most of these activities and applications act as a review for vocabulary building. They are very simple applications to use, but powerful in the way they help you learn.
Rocket Spanish provides awesome value, you get 12 hours of audio lessons for under $100 and you have a 60 day money back guarantee if you're not totally satisfied with the program. As mentioned, since it's an online course you get access to the course materials and MP3 lessons right after your purchase. There is no waiting for a course to be shipped to you in the mail.
If using a software package on your computer each day to learn Spanish doesn't appeal to you then Rocket Spanish is the course you should check out.
#3 Tell Me More Spanish
This is the most in depth learn Spanish software I came across in my reviews. With over 950 hours of lesson content and a built in Speech recognition feature to correct your pronunciation this is the grand daddy of Spanish programs.
So why isn't Tell me More Spanish the #1 pick? For a couple of reasons. First, it's not designed to teach you quickly, it's an in depth course designed to to take several months to build up your comprehension and speaking abilities.
Of course there's nothing wrong with a comprehensive course, it's just that the majority of people I have spoken with want to learn conversational Spanish quickly for an upcoming trip, vacation or just for pleasure.
If you're looking to become fully bi-lingual in Spanish and want an alternative to expensive community college courses then by all means Tell Me More Spanish is right for you. If you fall into the category of someone who wants to pick up the basics to communicate quickly, consider Visual Link Spanish.
Using Tell Me More Spanish
This is a very intelligent software package. You have two choices to navigate through the lessons. First you can opt to just pick and choose which lessons you want to learn and then allow Tell Me More Spanish to quiz you frequently with written and audio tests to determine where you need improvement. The software will even suggest which lessons you should do to improve those areas.
The second option is start at lesson 1 and follow along through the series of lessons. Thanks to this learning format you can start using Tell Me More Spanish software no matter what your current skill level. If you have a bit of knowledge already simply skip over a few of the beginner lessons.
A very high tech feature of the program is at certain points you actually have a dialog with in Spanish with your computer. This simulates different circumstances you could find yourself in to test your current ability to speak Spanish conversationally.
If you're willing to commit 30-60 minutes a day to learning Spanish, and you truly want to master the language then this is the course for you. The Tell Me More Spanish Version 10 package 1 & 2 runs about $229 and comes with a 90 day money back guarantee.